Health  Agrobiotechnology











Cambrico Biotech provides technology services and expertise in the following fields: diagnosis of diseases affecting crops, phyto-nematological analysis, quality control of products based on biological control organisms, in vitro testing of the effectiveness of plant health products, molecular identification of fungi and bacteria. All these are performed through the application of classic microbiology techniques and molecular biology (PCR, RT-PCR, sequencing).

The laboratory is approved by the Regional Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries. General Directorate of Agricultural and Livestock Production. Junta de Andalucía, Registered as an Agro-Livestock and Wild Species Laboratory.

The effective management of plant diseases is based on careful diagnosis.


PLANT HEALTH SERVICES

                                                                                                                                 
  
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The use of molecular tools and analysis at the DNA level allow short-term responses to issues that would either be impossible to deal with by other means, or require more resources of time and money to solve. For example, some of these issues are molecular identification of varieties in cases of uncertainty, or feature selection (resistance to pathogens) through analysis of molecular markers rather than phenotypic studies. The following are some of the most frequent. For information on other applications, please contact the company.


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Variety identifiaction
Variety comparison
Molecular analysis of hybrids

Marker Assisted Selection
Development of markers


 
 
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PLANT HEALTH SERVICES

Strawberry Health Check



Diseases are a limiting factor for strawberry cultivation for the production of both plants and fruit. The first step in the control and management of disease is to identify the cause of these problems.

Cambrico offers services based on microbiological and molecular techniques for the diagnosis of the main pathogens of strawberry crops such as: Colletotrichum sp, Macrophomina phaseolina, Oomycetes such as Pythium spp. and Phytophthora cactorum and Phytophthora spp., Rhizoctonia sp., Verticillium dahliae and Xanthomonas fragariae among others.



> Preferably take samples from the areas showing the first symptoms of the problem. Do not send dead plants with very advanced symptoms because they are colonized by secondary organisms that may hinder the detection or isolation of the primary pathogen. It is important to collect samples before the application of plant health products. These products can interfere with the laboratory tests.

> Plants with symptoms. Send if possible 4-5 whole plants, showing different stages of disease development. Do not pull up the plants, remove them gently to avoid damaging the roots. Place the root system in a plastic bag, tie with a rubber band around the crown to keep the soil and plant separate. Wrap everything in newspaper.

> If the symptoms are not clear or some anomaly is present send the whole plant and, if possible, send a healthy plant that will help the diagnosis. Wrap the healthy plant separately and label it.

> If dealing with nursery plants, whether "fresh plants", "fresh upland plants " or "frigo plants", consult the laboratory regarding the collection and shipment of samples.

> As soon as the samples are taken send them to the laboratory. If you have to take them a day before, put them in the refrigerator and send them another day.

> Send the samples with the “Agriculture” Analysis Request Form.

> Avoid sending samples on Friday so they will not decompose over the weekend and there are no delays in the processing.


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PLANT HEALTH SERVICE

Phyto-Nematological Analysis



Nematodes are called the hidden or invisible enemies of agriculture due to their small size, and when their impact is evident, the pest population level is high. These organisms not only weaken plants and reduce yields by direct action on the roots, they also act in aetiological complexes involving fungi, bacteria and viruses.



> Take a samples of the soil and roots to detect the presence of nematodes.

> Take the samples around the root zone of plants showing symptoms and around the plants near them. If the crop is woody, take the samples around the drip zone (about 1-2m from the trunk).

> Do not take samples from dead plants.

> Avoid periods when the soil is dry or waterlogged for long periods or at temperatures below 5 °C.

  > The samples are taken at a depth of 5-30 cm for shallow-rooted plants (e.g. vegetables) and for other crops are taken according to the depth to which the roots reach. In case of grasslands include the first 5 cm.

  > In general, it is considered that for accurate and reliable sampling at least 1 sample should be taken (composed of 10-15 sub-samples of 100-200 cc of soil each) from the zone surrounding the roots of the crop for each plot of 2 hectares. It is important to ensure that samples contain a sufficient amount of secondary roots (30-40 g of root).  

  > Place the samples in strong plastic bags of 2-3 litres. Make sure it is securely closed to prevent dehydration and NEVER add water. Label each sample. If different plots are sampled, carefully clean the tool used to avoid contamination.  

> As soon as the samples are taken send them the laboratory. If you have to take them a day before, put them in the fridge and send them another day. Avoid exposing the samples to the sun as they must be kept cool so the nematodes do not die and the results are reliable.

> Send the samples with the “Agriculture” Analysis Request Form.

> Avoid sending samples on Friday so they will not decompose over the weekend and there are no delays in the processing.


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PLANT HEALTH SERVICES

In vitro tests of the effectiveness of plant health products


In vitro tests of effectiveness of products with a fungicidal-fungistatic action give us an indirect estimate of the practical value of the product and allows resistance to be detected. In vitro tests consist of putting the product to be tested into direct contact with the target pathogen to see how it affects its growth. Its application approaches the trials of the effectiveness of plant health products against a specific pathogen, the detection of resistant strains, the better understanding of the mode of action of a product, etc.

The evaluation of the effectiveness of the products in the field is subject to much more interference and is more complex, so we always undertake a primary in vitro evaluation for the most effective products. However, in vitro tests only give an indirect estimate of the practical value of the product, which is why these results should be compared with those obtained later in the field. A product that is effective in vitro would not necessarily be so in the field because its performance is influenced by factors such as degradability, persistence, etc. However, if a product is not useful in vitro it will be unlikely to be so in the field.



Contact the laboratory prior to sending samples.


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PLANT HEALTH SERVICES

Molecular Taxonomy of bacteria and fungi


A reliable taxonomy is crucial for the assessment of biodiversity and for habitat classification based on species composition, and is crucial for comparative studies of model organisms. Often, molecular taxonomy is needed to validate established species and identify those that require taxonomic revision, even if the phenotypic and ecological characteristics are well established.



Contact the laboratory prior to sending samples.


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PLANT HEALTH SERVICES

Quality control of biological control agents


For a product based on biological control agents (fungi, bacteria) to be considered of good quality, it must meet certain standards established by agencies responsible for regulating the quality of these products. These parameters are:

Concentrations of the agent: can determine the number of propagulae typical of the biological control agent present
in the final product.  

Percentage of germination or viability of the agent: to determine the number of propagulae that are able to germinate over a period of time, after being seeded in culture medium.  

Purity: to determine whether the final product is pure or contains undesirable contaminants, such as other fungi, bacteria or yeasts.

Cambrico offers analysis of these parameters by applying classical microbiology and molecular biology techniques.



Contact the laboratory prior to sending samples.


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